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Business News of Thursday, 19 April 2012

Source: GNA

MTN launches Alternative Livelihood Project in Koforidua

MTN Ghana on Thursday launched an Alternative Livelihood Project (ALP), aimed at improving quality of life for persons with disability in Koforidua.

The project would provide 150 MTN motorized custom tricycles worth GH¢ 468,882.00 to physically challenged persons in high traffic locations across the country.

The tricycles, powered by solar-enabled devices, would serve as sales points for airtime, SIM cards, and SIM and mobile money registration among others.

Mrs Cynthia Lumor, Corporate Services Executive-MTN, launching the project said, the project formed part of MTN’s effort at promoting employment in the country.

“We recognize the fact that the issue of unemployment is a big one and ranks very high on the government’s list of priority areas, therefore as a responsible corporate organization, we must fully support this national concern to provide employment to the people of Ghana”, she added.

Mrs Lumor said, the issue of supporting the physically challenged was particularly critical because of MTN’s own core values, which stress the “Can Do spirit” and the company’s conviction that, the disabled had a lot of potential if given the opportunity and the tools.

She said the maintenance of the tricycles for the first year had been built into the initial costing and beneficiaries will bear the cost only after the first year.

Mrs Lumor added that, the project would also train the beneficiaries on how to operate the equipment.

President of the Ghana Society of the Physically Disabled (PWDs), Mr Joseph Adu-Boampong, said all over the world, PWDs suffer discrimination and in some cases total exclusion from participating in their communities.

“Misconception of disability as incapacitation, and ill-founded cultural beliefs that disability is an affront, poetic justice, and ill-omen, among others work together to make society, societal systems and operations inaccessible to PWDs”, he added.

He said those beliefs also induce members against PWDs, hence preventing their development.

Mr Adu-Boampong, expressed gratitude to MTN for the initiation of social protection intervention for PWDs, and assured the company of their support to collaborate to implement the project.**